Wednesday, January 30, 2008


I'm hosting our Medical School Wives' girls' night out at our apartment next week. My plan is to just provide dessert and people will come, eat and chat. That's basically what we do when we actually go out to a restaurant so it should work here right? I'm worried though because last week was the GNO for January and I think people might not come to mine. They are just so close together. Oh well, at least that will mean more leftover goodies for me! What goodies do you think I should make? (Keep in mind that last month had around 20 women.)

Monday, January 28, 2008

Birthday Photos

Dan's birthday went pretty well I'd say. Considering he had a test in two days and we didn't have a whole lot of money for gifts, we had a great time. I think he enjoyed his pancake cake and we liked to actually have him with us for breakfast. I only took photos later in the day to share so here they are:

This is her trying to tell us that she has a poopy diaper.

Apparently we didn't get it so she tried her "Please change me now" smile. (What do you think of the side pony? I thought it was funny so I kept it, but I'm not sure I'm going to do it again.)

Dan looks good in both photos though so I kept them anyway. I discovered the poopiness after taking the photos and she was much happier later, but my camera had completely run out of batteries so you only get the grumpy baby shots.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Birthday Eve

Last night I looked at the budget and with a little re-arranging I made it so that we can still eat, get a new alternator for the Honda, and get Dan clamps for his birthday! Hooray! It'll be tight, but I feel so powerful for making it work. Today Charlotte and I went to get the clamps for Daddy and she decided that we should probably let Daddy pick out the clamps instead of getting them ourselves. There were so many of them and they were all so shiny and fun to reach for, but when we almost knocked a pile off the hooks we decided it was time to go. Plus, then he gets to go to the Home Depot even more!

Saturday is his test. He seems pretty confident, but we all still need to have positive thoughts for him.
As it turns out I hate all types of health insurance, not just the government sponsored kind. At least I found a doctor that will see me tomorrow.

Monday, January 21, 2008

New Links

Since I have such a loooong list of links over there to the left I thought I'd take a minute to note the two I recently added. The first is A3 Robinson. These are our good friends in St. Louis (I know! We actually have friends!). Charlotte is in love with their little boy Asher, who is older than she is and also pretty annoyed by her most of the time. Dan studies with Aaron and we live in the same neighborhood of St. Louis. We love to have them over! The other is Voice of Reason. I pretty much read her blog every day and I like it a lot. She's funny and smart. So I figured why not share the joy? So there you go.

A Recipe for Success

Get Up,
Get Fed,
Get Dressed,
Make Your Bed.

It never fails. When I do those four things my day is great and I get a lot done. If I don't do those four things, then I don't get things done and I don't have a great day. Or at least I don't feel like I get things done. Even if I will be spending all day at home doing chores with nobody to see me, if I get ready for the day in the morning my day is much, much better. I always feel better too.

(Does yellow cake with peanut butter fudge frosting count as breakfast? I didn't think so either, but it sure tasted good.)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Because I haven't posted any lately

This is the outfit that Aunt Katie got for her for Christmas. She wore it again yesterday and I love it.
We gave her a "soothing bubble bath" a few nights ago and she kept trying to eat the bubbles!
I realized that I can put two pigtails in her hair. Too bad I also realized that I'm awful at cutting off the top of her head in photos. I'll get a better photo of her new cute hair style next time I do it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Do you eat leftovers?

Before Dan I never ate leftovers, that is, unless my mom cunningly disguised them as something new all together. That means that the leftovers weren't really leftovers they were re-dos. So in the end I never ate leftovers. Dan eats leftovers. Leftovers are part and parcel of our medical school experience and I ate leftovers for lunch and dinner yesterday and lunch the day before. I don't like it. Not one bit. But I do it. Is there anything that you do because of circumstance? Or because it would drive your spouse insane if you didn't do it?

My Year to Shine

Last year I was horrible at getting good presents for Dan. When I say horrible I am not exaggerating. Every single gift that I thought out, planned and gave was a dud. That's why I decided that this year is my year to shine in the gift giving category. I already have a plan for his Christmas present and it will cost a total of about $5 and a whole year to plan. That's how dedicated I am to what I will hereafter refer to as The Gift Glory Year.

The only problem is that his birthday is in January and I have no money to get him glorious gift #1. I was going to get him some wood clamps because he wants to build this beautiful mission style bench for our house with drawers in the seat and a great back. He doesn't have enough clamps of the right size to complete the project. I was super excited to get him the right clamps, but now that's off the table. I need to find him something that he'll enjoy that is cheap or free. The only thing is that my awesome cheap present is slated to be the Christmas present and I couldn't give it now even if I wanted to because it really will take a whole year to put together.

Another issue about the clamp situation is that he can't start the project until we have money to buy the wood for it so it's not like he could start it for a month or so anyway. The clamps would have been there though when he was ready to start. He's been doing all this research on mission style furniture and the woods he wants to make the thing out of. He is really excited about it.

So any ideas? I just want him to know how much we love him and what a great dad he is and how much we appreciate all the work he is doing right now. I know that clamps probably wouldn't have said all that, but they would have made him happy. I think in order for this to be The Gift Glory Year I'm going to have to be much more flexible. I'm too stuck on those stinking clamps!

To Dream the Impossible Dream

It is impossible to completely baby proof your house.

Translation: Charlotte found the toilet paper roll yesterday.

Friday, January 11, 2008

And the People Rejoiced

We finally got our new fridge today! YEAH! It's white, which matches all the other appliances in the kitchen. Another bonus for it is that it closes fully. Also the lack of rust and black stuff makes me very happy. Unfortunately the old fridge is now hanging out on our death trap of a deck. Try as they might the walls wouldn't move even one inch to let the fridge through. (Crazy how that works.) My land lord told them to just try and "shove" it through, but they didn't want to take out a whole corner of wall to get the fridge out. Instead of giving up my land lord told the installers that they could leave the old fridge on the back deck and bring the new one in. I'm just wondering what he's thinking about doing with the old one. It doesn't have the doors on it anymore so the next time it rains it's going to get filled with water which will then grow mold and be gross. He did say something about a sledge hammer and "busting it apart" to take it down "piece by piece." I don't know much about old fridges, but I thought there were CFCs in there or something which you shouldn't let into the atmosphere. I don't really know, but I did bring that issue up with him. His other brilliant idea was to take down one of the rickety railings that I wouldn't even trust enough to lean on and just push the fridge off the second floor deck. Yeah, that sounds like a great idea.

So anyone want an old, rusty, fridge that doesn't close all the way? You can have it for free if you can get it off our deck!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Mom answering cell phone: "Denise *******, something something pharmaceuticals."
Me: "I just wanted to apologize for every time I wiped my nose on your shirt. Every time."
Mom: Laughs

After talking to both my mother and sister yesterday I started to think about my experience as a mom, thus far. Charlotte is officially a toddler. This means that yesterday she walked the entire length of our house to the bathroom where I was taking a shower. Then she pushed the door open (I didn't figure it would need to be latched) and then walked to the shower. She proceeded to open the door and stick her head in and call to me to let her come join the fun. As I was still in the shampooing process and she was fully clothed so I didn't let her. This made her mad. Being a toddler also means that she can make her way to the bathroom all by herself. And that she's strong enough to open the lid on the toilet. All I have to say about that is ick, ick, ick.

After recounting a few stories like this to my mom and then my sister, Katie said that being a mom must be a lot of work. Every little thing that isn't a big deal becomes a big deal when you have to take the baby along. When she said that I replied that being a mom isn't that hard of a job (please don't write hate comments until you read to the end of the post). My reasoning is that for every night of screaming terror or puking disasters there are days of let's just watch Nemo or splash in the ponds. Every job has its positives and negatives. She told me that she was going to remind me of that comment one day (now that I've written it down you don't need to Katie). It got me to thinking though, is that really true? Do I really spend more time just having fun or doing work? I came up with my answer, for now, after a whole 9 months of experience. Granted it's not expert opinion, but it's my opinion, and my blog come to think of it, so there.

Here goes.

I think that the hard things about being a mom are surprisingly HARD. I thought I was ready for them. Whenever I watched Supernanny I thought, duh, of course you have to keep putting your kids back to bed. They need to learn to go to sleep and sleep in their own beds! You'll go insane if you let them stay up all night every night! I still agree with the reasoning in that statement, but now I understand why it was so hard for the moms and dads to do that. I do not blame them for not being able to teach their kids that sooner. Because it is stinking hard to listen to your child wail like a banshee, long enough that they cough. I remember when I would lay in bed just holding my husband's hand waiting for her to sleep so that I could. That was hard, but for us it worked.

It's also hard to not know what your child wants.

It's also hard to know what your child wants and know that they can't/ shouldn't have it.

Breastfeeding for the first two weeks involves physical pain. I don't care how many books I read saying that if you're doing it right it shouldn't hurt. Charlotte and I were doing it right. I went to a lactation specialist and she told me so. It still hurt every time for two weeks.

Going places with kids is hard. Just the physical act of getting them ready takes a bit of fortitude.

On the flip side, the awesome, great, fun things about being a mom are amazingly good. I was trying to think of a better word than good, but that's really what describes them. They are good in every sense. They fill me with joy and I love them.

My baby's first smile, giggle, roll over, anything and everything is exciting to me. I have loads of photos of my daughter sleeping just because I kept trying to get a shot of that little smile. I share every milestone with family and friends because I just can't contain my joy.

I love that I can do things whenever I want to. I remember a day last summer that I decided we wouldn't clean the house we would play splash instead. I filled up a serving tray with water sat her in it and we just splashed together. I can spend all day cleaning and doing chores one day, but the next we can spend going to the park, making cookies, and seeing friends.

On a more selfish, and completely honest note, I know I can count on two hours of alone time just for me everyday. I can do with it what I want (granted sometimes that means mopping the floor without interruption) and I love it.

So I don't know if I would classify being a stay-at-home mom as a hard or easy job. All I know is that it's the best job for me right now.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

There's no place like home, there's no place like home

As many of you may (or may not I guess) know a huge storm ripped its way across the Midwest last night. Here in St. Louis the TV had a ticker showing the tornado warnings across the bottom of both the National Championship game and American Gladiator. (Thanks to my husband that was the programming we were watching last night.) Tornado warnings always catch my attention because until we moved here I had never even seen a warning on the TV. Growing up in the west you just don't get the conditions for tornadoes. I guess there had been a few in Washington where I grow up, but they had never actually touched down in my recollection. There was also that weird tornado in Salt Lake while I was going to college, but it seemed more like a weird fluke. Here we see them often in spring and fall, but not often in January. I noticed about half way through Gladiator that there was a tornado watch for St. Louis county and St. Louis city! Since moving here there have been many tornado warnings in the viewing area of our TV station, but not ever for us. In fact, since moving to St. Louis I have noticed a funny trend for the most severe weather. It pretty much breaks to the north or south before hitting the city limits. I like to call this the St. Louis effect (or is it affect? I can never get those two right). Needless to say I brushed every thought of tornadoes to the side.

Another thing to make the weather not such a big deal was that our county just had a tornado watch. In my mind that's a step down from warning. I did however call my mom to let her know, because nothing says I love you like your mom halfway across the US worrying about you. Then, when I didn't get a great reaction from her I called my sister to let her know, but I didn't really play it up since I didn't want her worrying.

As we finished watching Gladiators and the game seemed to be loosing momentum I started to watch the warnings more clearly. This was my first big mistake. Actual tornadoes were being spotted in the county just next to ours. Never mind that counties are pretty big and I shouldn't worry about the one next to ours, red flags started to appear in my brain. Dan wanted to watch a movie since he wasn't tired and there wasn't anything we wanted to watch on TV. I told him then I wouldn't be able to see the weather report. So I decided we could watch the movie and I would put the weather report on the computer. Mistake number two. As Ocean's Thirteen progressed I checked back in with the weather every 15 minutes. Swirling winds (which in my mind meant tornado) would show up looking like they were pointing right at us. Then the St. Louis effect would start to come in to play and they would either lose energy or go to the north of us. All this paranoid tracking got me convinced that our house would be hit by a tornado sometime before 5 AM when the tornado watch was over. Not only that, but we would be sleeping in our beds, on the top floor, in rooms that were exterior to the house and thus we would all be killed.

I was very nervous when I went to bed. In fact I told Dan that we should sleep with Charlotte in our bed so that she would be safer. Also that we should sleep with the radio on so that if anything was coming we would know. Turns out that Charlotte doesn't sleep if she's in the bed with us. She plays with our mouths. After a good 20 minutes of mouth playing she went back into her own bed. Plus, I decided that Dan was right and we didn't need to sleep with the radio on. At 1:49AM I awoke to the flash of lightening and crash of thunder very, very close. Then I heard strong winds and driving rain. So in my panicked state I went to the front room and turned on the TV. Turns out that the St. Louis effect is very strong and all the station showed was thunder storms for the whole viewing area. I went back to bed and slept very soundly. I didn't even notice when Dan tried to get up at 6 AM. He said that there was still lightening, thunder and rain at that time so he went back to bed until 7 AM when it had passed. What a storm! Too bad we slept through the whole thing.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Back to Comfy

We got back from WA last night. Our amazing friends not only picked us up from the airport, but they also cooked dinner for us. It was awesome. The only thing marring the evening is Charlotte burned her little finger on the oven. YIKES! She's OK though.

Updates on Charlotte was that she's now decided that she can take several steps in a row without any help! She can officially walk on her own at 9 months old. She's really slow at it though so I'm still not having to race after her.

Today it's a good 60 degrees in St. Louis. I can't believe how warm it is on the first Sunday in January! We took a walk around a neighborhood in our area with beautiful houses and it got me thinking how much I enjoy just getting out. I know it'll get cold again before spring really happens, but I do plan on taking as much advantage of this warmth before it's done. I have got to get myself moving again. It seems that since mid November I haven't really been doing a whole lot of physical activity and I'm so ready to get back into it. Here's the thing though, I get bored of doing the same things. Plus, I have to find activities that I can do with Charlotte. Also, I have to do them for free since I don't really want to spend money on it. That makes my options go down dramatically. I'm for sure going out running as long as this weather keeps up though. It's supposed to be in the 70's tomorrow!

Our two week break was awesome. We tried to fit in everything and everyone we possibly could, which made for three really tired people when we got home yesterday. I finally feel normal again at 2 today. We went sledding while we were in Washington and it was alternately fun and terrifying. Dan's sister's in-laws live a ways into the country in an area with rolling hills so we had the best runs that weren't covered with people. It was awesome. It wasn't awesome when Dan and I went down the hill on a tube going backwards and then hit the jump at the bottom and landed on our heads. I've decided that I've got to get a whole lot braver when my daughter is old enough to notice because I don't want her to be scared of everything.

Hope everyone is having a great New Year!